Frequently Asked Questions About The FCRC For Members
The FCRC is the only organization dedicated exclusively to organizing and administering the day-to-day grassroots operations for the Republican Party here in Fairfax County. Your participation is essential to the proper functioning of our form of government.
As an introduction, here are answers to questions that new members often ask. If you have additional questions, please let us know!
What is the basic organizational structure of the FCRC?
The FCRC is organized much like other volunteer organizations. There are elected officers. Members meet regularly and vote on key issues. There are various committees. And we have by-laws, known as the “Party Plan”, which you can find here. The questions and answers below provide more information about the key positions within the organization, and how it functions.
What does the Chairman do, and how is the Chairman chosen?
Our Chairman is elected every even-numbered year at the County Convention. The Chairman oversees the FCRC’s entire scope of operations, including fundraising, membership relations, volunteer recruitment, and Election Day operations. He sets priorities for the organization, with the help of the Executive Committee. He also sets the agenda for membership meetings, and runs those meetings.
What does the Executive Committee do, and who are its members?
The members of the FCRC Executive Committee oversee various functions of the organization, and advise the Chairman on how to accomplish the FCRC’s goals. The voting members include: First Vice Chairman; Second Vice Chairman for Administration; Third Vice Chairman for Community Engagement; Secretary; Treasurer; Vice Chairman for Operations; Vice Chairman for Finance; Vice Chairman for Communications; and the nine Magisterial District Chairmen. Some members of the Executive Committee are elected by the membership; others are nominated by the Chairman, subject to confirmation by the membership. In addition, the College Republicans, Young Republicans, and the Virginia Federation of Republican Women all select representatives to serve on the Executive Committee. The Parliamentarian, the General Counsel, and the Chairmen of the Elections and Events Committees are non-voting members. The Executive Committee meets once a month throughout the year.
What do the District Chairmen do?
Nine of the ten members of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors are elected from individual “Magisterial Districts.” The FCRC has a district chairman for each of those nine districts.
Each Magisterial District consists of between 25 and 30 individual voting precincts. The District Chairs are the heart of our grassroots organization: their key task is to recruit and train Precinct Captains and volunteers. District Chairs are also responsible for working with their local volunteer teams to organize and implement grassroots activities in support of Republican candidates. They work to maintain a Republican Party presence in their districts throughout the year.
What does a Precinct Captain do?
There are 243 voting precincts in Fairfax County, each having between a few hundred and a little over 4,000 voters. The precinct captain is the leader of our Party in that area, and each precinct captain is responsible for recruiting a team of neighborhood volunteers to support Party activities. Working closely with the District Chairman, these teams perform critical tasks, such as handing out literature at community events, and greeting voters at the polls on Election Day.
How can I become a Precinct Captain?
Contact your District Chairman. If you need help with that, contact Eric Johnson, our Executive Director, at FCRC headquarters.
Who controls the FCRC?
You do. The Chairman sets the overall agenda, with the advice of the Executive Committee. Although we are bound by state party rules, in addition to our own Party Plan, we are entirely self-governing. The membership votes on amendments to the Party Plan, approves the budget and the operations plan, and takes other votes as necessary. The FCRC is a grassroots organization, and ultimately belongs to those Republican voters in Fairfax who become members.
What are my obligations as a member?
Your only specific obligations as a member are to support the Party’s nominees for office, and attend meetings. If you miss three meetings in a row, you will lose your voting privileges, but they can be restored upon payment of a $10 fee.
Does the FCRC receive any funds from the Republican National Committee or from the Republican Party of Virginia?
No. FCRC is entirely self-funded through membership dues, fundraisers, and individual contributions from concerned citizens who want to be involved and support Republican efforts right here in Fairfax County. We occasionally participate in joint events that may be wholly or partially funded by the RNC or RPV, but we are responsible for all other expenses.
Does any of the FCRC leadership receive payment?
No. All of our leaders are strictly volunteers. In order to function effectively, the FCRC retains the services of a professional Executive Director to carry out day-to-day administrative operations. There is also a part-time Political Director. This paid staff works at the direction of the Chairman.
Does the FCRC have an office?
Yes. FCRC has an office located at 4246 Chain Bridge Road, in Fairfax City. The office entrance and parking are at the back of the building, off of West Drive. Office hours are 10 am – 5 pm, M-F, and evenings and weekends as needed in the fall.
Activities often take place at the office on evenings and weekends, including training, campaign rallies, phone banking, and other efforts to support our mission of electing Republicans.
Does the FCRC offer training?
Yes. We schedule training sessions for precinct captains, precinct volunteers and poll watchers at various times during the year.
Is the FCRC associated with any other Republican groups?
Yes. The FCRC operates as a local unit within the Republican Party of Virginia. The FCRC also works with the leadership and members of affiliated groups, such as the George Mason College Republicans, the Fairfax Area Young Republicans, various Virginia Federation of Women Republican chapters, and the 8th, 10th, and 11th Congressional District Committees.
Does the FCRC have a presence online?
Yes. FCRC has a website (www.FairfaxGOP.org), a Facebook page (www.facebook.com/FairfaxGOP), and a Twitter account (@FairfaxGOP). Please check us out online and via social media to stay up-to-date on our activities, and share this information with your friends in Fairfax to help spread the word!
How often and where are meetings held?
Party rules require that we meet once a quarter. The Chairman schedules meetings based on the business needs of the FCRC, and we typically meet two months out of three. To make the meetings reasonably convenient for everyone, locations are rotated, generally in the central part of the County.
The date and location of each meeting is announced at least ten days in advance. Announcements are made via mailed postcards and email. Meeting dates and locations are also posted on the FCRC website, Facebook page and Twitter account. We almost always meet in a public school cafeteria, because of the low cost and the need for seating for several hundred people.
Meetings are almost always held on a weeknight, and begin with a social hour where light refreshments are served. Members sit with other members from their Magisterial District, which creates a great opportunity to get to know other Republicans from your part of the county.
What happens at FCRC meetings?
Members receive reports on the various activities of the Committee. They hear from candidates, elected officials and others who are working on behalf of the Party or affiliated organizations. They learn about upcoming grassroots events and volunteer opportunities. They vote on the budget, the operations plan, and other matters that require the approval of the entire Committee membership.
How long are the meetings?
Two hours, counting the social hour. Social hour generally starts at 7 pm, and the business meeting at 8 pm. We try very hard to adjourn the business meeting by 9 pm so that members can get home at a reasonable time.
How do I volunteer?
Our biggest need is for precinct captains and other neighborhood volunteers. The best way to get involved at that level is to speak with your Precinct Captain or District Chairman. If you are unable to reach either of them, or would like information about other opportunities, just call the FCRC office at 703-766-4467, and ask to speak with the Executive Director.
You can also sign up at our volunteer page here.
For more information, visit www.FairfaxGOP.org or call 703-766-4467